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  #1  
Old 05-03-2012, 03:37 PM
Scott Smithwick (Interspire Staff) Scott Smithwick (Interspire Staff) is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Austin
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Default Shopping Cart Being Discontinued On July 1st

As you may know if you’ve been following along, our focus lately has been on BigCommerce, which is our SaaS e-commerce offering. BigCommerce has been growing extremely fast since it was launched in 2009 and it’s now very close to reaching 25,000 clients.

When we launched Interspire back in 2003, SaaS was still a new concept and our focus, much like everyone else’s was on perpetually licensed (or “behind the firewall”, as it’s now called) software. Since then, times have of course changed and now most software is delivered on-demand.

As a result, today we’re announcing that on July 1st 2012 we will be discontinuing the following products:

Interspire Shopping Cart
Interspire Knowledge Manager
Interspire Website Publisher

This means that up until July 1st you will still be able to purchase licenses of these products, however on July 1st we will no longer be selling new licenses, upgrades or extra maintenance.

All existing clients will continue to receive support until their maintenance period expires, however after July 1st there won’t be an option to extend or renew any maintenance period.

If you are an Interspire Shopping Cart customer and would like to switch to BigCommerce, then please go here to learn more. We have partners dedicated to assisting with the migration process and you can look forward to dozens of new features which are part of BigCommerce.

Thank you for supporting the Interspire products over the years and we hope they’ve helped you grow your business and revenues. Our focus moving forwards is on BigCommerce and really empowering business owners to take advantage of our SaaS e-commerce offering to grow their business.
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Interspire Manager
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"Web Software Inspired by You"
http://www.interspire.com/
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  #2  
Old 05-04-2012, 01:42 AM
mattnz + mattnz is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 171
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So if we purchase a new upgrades and maintenance contract for 12 months before the 1st of July:

(a) Will the software continue to have bugs fixed, and bug patches released by support?
(b) Are the current bugs fixed? I believe from these forums that there is a problem with the categories in the current version, as well as reviews being spammed.
(c) When you do cease support for it, will all of the known bugs be fixed, so it will be a fully mature product, or will it be left with known bugs?

Personally I am at a crossroads as to whether to pay to upgrade to the newest version, and get the latest secure version so my client can have a couple of years at least of trouble free shopping cart usage. I do fear that I will be upgrading form 5.x to 6.1.8 and I will encounter bugs that may not end up being fixed. So hopefully you can provide me with some reassurance that it is worth it, and I am not going to have problems with unfixed bugs, that will never get fixed.

When I emailed you a few months ago, you did tell me the Interspire shopping cart was now a developers cart to use as base for building a custom shopping cart, and that only bug / security fixes would be released in the future, so no longer any upgrades to features. However you didn't give me any indication that it was going to be ceased to be supported too in the future.
Therefore in the future is it possible that the code will become open source, to allow developers to use and further develop it, and other developers to support it. My fear is that in a year, hackers may find security holes in the software, and we would have no way to fix those holes, which may mean we would need to abandon the cart with would be a huge cost. Opensourcing could benefit both developers and your company too with big commerce gaining new features from the development community, and it would continue to be kept up to date in terms of security.

Personally I can't use big commerce for my own clients as it can't be white labeled, and the disksapce and bandwidth quota allocations are too tiny to make it affordable, when you are getting through a couple of GBs of traffic a day. Although I have referred a few people who wanted to build and manage their own cart, onto it, and it is fine for that sort of thing, but there is no real money in that for me.
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  #3  
Old 05-04-2012, 02:10 AM
myshop + myshop is offline
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Location: Central Coast, NSW Australia
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Yeah, the big issue for me is the $$ - I could make coin from reselling ISC, but cant make a living reselling BigCommerce - But I can reselling CS-Cart. So I suppose I will need to work with both.
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  #4  
Old 05-04-2012, 04:31 AM
mattnz + mattnz is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myshop View Post
Yeah, the big issue for me is the $$ - I could make coin from reselling ISC, but cant make a living reselling BigCommerce - But I can reselling CS-Cart. So I suppose I will need to work with both.
There is also the hosting where you can make money on, which you can't if your client uses big commerce. Hosting is the bread and butter, where you are getting a steady income, which you don't get from setting up the odd shopping cart. You need a steady income from hosting to make this sort of thing profitable.This is why a white labeled reseller system is needed. Otherwise the client can bypass us and just signup to big commerce directly. I had a possible client do this, and even though I spend ages explaing the interspire/big commerce system and it's benefits over over shopping carts, they signed up directly to big commerce and I didn't see any percentage commission, even though I am a big commerce partner.
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  #5  
Old 05-04-2012, 04:33 AM
myshop + myshop is offline
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Location: Central Coast, NSW Australia
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Yeah, this is exactly my issue.

I also dont feel confident in building their business and not my own. Who knows if or when they decide not to pay the commiussions any longer - Or change the rules or change the amount etc.

Time to learn other carts me thinks :-)
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  #6  
Old 05-04-2012, 04:39 AM
myshop + myshop is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Central Coast, NSW Australia
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I also find it borderline criminal the way the cart customers have been left in the lurch with updates - There are several issues with the cart that customers would expect to have fixed inline with the maintenance system.

Examples:

Google Picnik closed - BigCommerce have an alternative, ISC customers - even thou they have valid maintenance contracts dont.
Google Maps API update - ISC needs to be updated to cater for the new API.
Customer reviews getting spammed - BigCommerce has had updates to this, nothing for ISC.
Create an Account Page - has no captcha - So clients get hundreds of fake customer account signups - Fixed in BC months ago.
IE9 compatability issues - Not fixed in ISC, but fixed in BC - causes me many calls a week from confused and upset clients.
PHP5.3 - nusoap component uses ereg - a depriciated component, which while only causing log notifications now, will cause the cart to cease working in a near future version of PHP.
Inventory Control - Allows inventory to go into negative as not enough checks are done during the view cart and proceed to checkout stages - Again, fixed in BC, not in ISC.
IEM Integration Issues - Currently there are two fatal integration issues in ISC code preventing proper integration with IEM unless hacks are done. Its terrible that these have not been fixed in ISC and patches released.
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David

Last edited by Scott Smithwick (Interspire Staff); 05-04-2012 at 07:51 PM.. Reason: Please discuss partner issues with Lee or Stephen
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  #7  
Old 05-04-2012, 04:43 AM
mattnz + mattnz is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 171
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myshop View Post
I also find it borderline criminal the way the cart customers have been left in the lurch with updates - There are several issues with the cart that customers would expect to have fixed inline with the maintenance system.

Examples:

Google Picnik closed - BigCommerce have an alternative, ISC customers - even thou they have valid maintenance contracts dont.
Google Maps API update - ISC needs to be updated to cater for the new API.
Customer reviews getting spammed - BigCommerce has had updates to this, nothing for ISC.
IE9 compatability issues - Not fixed in ISC, but fixed in BC - causes me many calls a week from confused and upset clients.
PHP5.3 - nusoap component uses ereg - a depriciated component, which while only causing log notifications now, will cause the cart to cease working in a near future version of PHP.
Inventory Control - Allows inventory to go into negative as not enough checks are done during the view cart and proceed to checkout stages - Again, fixed in BC, not in ISC.
IEM Integration Issues - Currently there are two fatal integration issues in ISC code preventing proper integration with IEM unless hacks are done. Its terrible that these have not been fixed in ISC and patches released.
I would expect all those problems to be fixed as part of the product updates part of the contract. eg If we find a problem with the shop that shouldn't be there, then it should be fixed. php 5.3 is a bit of a big one too, as my host will be moving all sites over to that soon, so I wan to make sure the site continues to work on that. But perhaps Scott can clarify. Basically I want to know what I will be getting when I pay for my updates and maintenance/support contract.

Last edited by Scott Smithwick (Interspire Staff); 05-04-2012 at 07:51 PM..
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  #8  
Old 06-04-2012, 10:51 AM
Jayleb + Jayleb is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 7
Default ISC 6.1.8 and IEM 6.1.2 Intergration

Quote:
Originally Posted by myshop View Post
IEM Integration Issues - Currently there are two fatal integration issues in ISC code preventing proper integration with IEM unless hacks are done. Its terrible that these have not been fixed in ISC and patches released.
Can you tell me a bit more about this David. I have a client who wants to upgrade both her IEM and ISC to latest versions before July 1st deadline. I believed they would work fine together. They basically need to collect clients email addresses through ISC newsletter signup feature and new ISC customers on checkout that opt in captured to IEM.

Thanks in advance

Last edited by Jayleb; 06-04-2012 at 10:54 AM..
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  #9  
Old 06-05-2012, 01:02 AM
myshop + myshop is offline
Interspire Customer
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Central Coast, NSW Australia
Posts: 1,337
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jayleb View Post
Can you tell me a bit more about this David. I have a client who wants to upgrade both her IEM and ISC to latest versions before July 1st deadline. I believed they would work fine together. They basically need to collect clients email addresses through ISC newsletter signup feature and new ISC customers on checkout that opt in captured to IEM.

Thanks in advance
1. ISC has an integration bug which causes subscribers to not get added to the auto responders in IEM. So if you have an auto responder setup to confirm the subscription, it never goes out and the customer remains in the database as unconfirmed and therefore never gets any marketing emails. I discovered this little beauty only after discovering months of unconfirmed recipients in my clients IEM databases. You can hack the xml.php file in IEM so that they subscribers get the auto responders - but its a hack. The fix needs to happen in ISC. Ticket ID IVF-332-59771
("add_to_autoresponder" parameter in the XML request is missing from ISC)

2. When someone orders somthing from the site the customer is added to the database however an error email is sent to the store admin advising them there was a problem. This generates thousands of error emails advising the store admin that somethine went wrong. This debacle was caused by a change in IEM to correct its xml behaviour but due to a bug in ISC that sends "is subscriber on list" and "add subscriber to list" requests twice. Its documented in ticket WAV-167-61001. Again a hack to xml.php can correct this behaviour, but its a hack. The real fix needs to be made to ISC.

3. Ticket: EXL-474-82670 - IEM doesnt send to all contacts. This bug is a real beauty.. Say you have 14000 people in your list and you send a campaign to them, the system hums along nicely sending ... 1 of 14000, 2 of 14000 and then somewhere it just stops and says the campaign is complete and it gives you a random number of recipients- like 7000. I have another customer with 45000 people in his list (active, subscribed, confirmed) and when he sends about 41000 people are sent the email. Very strange issue costing my clients thousands of dollars. I dont have a fix for this, despite the ticket being created 23rd May.

The first two can be worked around, but it gets very confusing trying to remember all these hacks especially when interspire keep releasing hotfixes (without release dates, change logs or version numbers) to IEM. I not only need to update the IEM files but I need to remember to apply these two hacks to xml.php to keep the thing running.
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David

Last edited by Scott Smithwick (Interspire Staff); 06-05-2012 at 04:10 PM..
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  #10  
Old 06-05-2012, 04:54 AM
Jayleb + Jayleb is offline
Interspire Customer
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 7
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by myshop View Post
1. ISC has an integration bug which causes subscribers to not get added to the auto responders in IEM. So if you have an auto responder setup to confirm the subscription, it never goes out and the customer remains in the database as unconfirmed and therefore never gets any marketing emails. I discovered this little beauty only after discovering months of unconfirmed recipients in my clients IEM databases. You can hack the xml.php file in IEM so that they subscribers get the auto responders - but its a hack. The fix needs to happen in ISC. Ticket ID IVF-332-59771
("add_to_autoresponder" parameter in the XML request is missing from ISC)

2. When someone orders somthing from the site the customer is added to the database however an error email is sent to the store admin advising them there was a problem. This generates thousands of error emails advising the store admin that somethine went wrong. This debacle was caused by a change in IEM to correct its xml behaviour but due to a bug in ISC that sends "is subscriber on list" and "add subscriber to list" requests twice. Its documented in ticket WAV-167-61001. Again a hack to xml.php can correct this behaviour, but its a hack. The real fix needs to be made to ISC.

3. Ticket: EXL-474-82670 - IEM doesnt send to all contacts. This bug is a real beauty.. Say you have 14000 people in your list and you send a campaign to them, the system hums along nicely sending ... 1 of 14000, 2 of 14000 and then somewhere it just stops and says the campaign is complete and it gives you a random number of recipients- like 7000. I have another customer with 45000 people in his list (active, subscribed, confirmed) and when he sends about 41000 people are sent the email. Very strange issue costing my clients thousands of dollars. I dont have a fix for this, despite the ticket being created 23rd May.

The first two can be worked around, but it gets very confusing trying to remember all these hacks especially when interspire keep releasing hotfixes (without release dates, change logs or version numbers) to IEM. I not only need to update the IEM files but I need to remember to apply these two hacks to xml.php to keep the thing running.

Its EXTREMLY POOR FORM from Interspire. The integration between these two products should be 100% rock solid, instead its pathetically bad.
WHOA! Thanks David for the detailed reply. You are 100% Right. It should be rock solid by now! Yes it is very confusing trying to keep up with the bugs, hacks and workarounds. Shame as IS products seemed to have so much potential too.

The crazy thing for me is that we want our clients to grow and succeed. If we move any of them over to Big Commerce, then they can never succeed beyond a store with limited stock and clients, otherwise Big Commerce cannot handle it. Even on their largest plan at $299.95 per month for 45 GB Bandwidth and 3 GB Storage our largest client needs twice as much storage, and a few more GB bandwidth right now. And they have lots of room to grow. I cannot understand Interspires strategy with Big commerce. I do not feel comfortable recommending anyone going with Big commerce for that reason alone. Then there is still the BUGS, BUGS, BUGS!

Last edited by Jayleb; 06-05-2012 at 04:58 AM..
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